When I was 20 years old I sat down and wrote myself a letter [about] the different things that I wanted to accomplish before I turned 40. Shortly before I turned 30 I opened the letter just to see how I was doing. (Also, I could hardly remember some of the things that I had written down.)
When I read the contents of the letter I noticed that the majority of things that I had on my list I had already accomplished! Now I know some of you may be thinking that is wonderful, but for me that was shocking and even bordering on scary. Here I was sitting down, reading a letter for my 20-year plan, and after 10 years now I was face-to-face with reality. What am I going to do now?
But what has been the most interesting is the way that my desires have changed, how my priorities have changed, how my reason for existing has changed.
- When I was 20 my goals [had to do with] what I could accomplish, but now that I am 30 my goals are [about] how I can help others. Somewhere along the road, I do not know exactly when or where it happened, I decided helping others was infinitely more rewarding than anything I could have achieved personally.
- My goals when I was 20 were to do more and accomplish more, where now that I am 30 my goals are to do less. I guess I learned something over this ten-year stretch and I am surprised that I took me so long to learn it. I cannot do everything good.
- My goals when I was 20 were to acquire things for myself… Now that I am 30 I want to give everything away. I am so much less attached to things than I was before. Not that we do not want nice things, simply that we do not need them to feel good about ourselves.
- My thought when I was 20 was that I knew a lot, but now that I am 30 I feel that I am just starting. Now that I am a little older I feel like I do not know as much as I once did (to tell you the truth I do not want to know as much as well).
- When I was 20 my goals were to do more things internationally but now that I am 30 my goals are to do more locally. A few years ago I remember when I would travel and minister at every invitation that I had but now I have started to see the value of staying put and ministering to the same people. Now I only travel if I have to and sometimes not even then. Plus it is hard being away from my family for that long.
- When I was 20 my goals were to do more to impact many people on a large scale, but now that I am 30 my goal is to pour my life into a few people. Years ago I was only happy if I was able to help many people on a large scale but now I am more than content pouring my life into a few people. It is like I can see the fruit more clearly.
- My goal when I was 20 was to do something big for God, and now that I am 30 my goal is to just obey God. Personally I do not care as much as before [about] the scale of what I do as long as God is pleased with me. If I obeyed Him then I can rest at night comfortably.
I cannot really say what these next few years will have in store for me, but I will say that I sure am enjoying them more. That does not mean that they have not been hard work. I do not think that I have worked harder in my life. But I think I like the [person] that I am becoming.
Friday, January 11, 2008
Evolving Goals and Ambitions
One of the subscribers to our Missions Catalyst e-Magazine wrote a great posting on how his life goal and ambitions have changed from his 20s to his 30s. DaRonn is a missionary in Bolivia. He and his family run an orphanage, as well as serving in a local church. Below is an excerpt; read the whole posting here.